gardens things I learned

Growing Tomaters

I’m trying my hand at growing tomatoes for the first time in a long time.  I’ve learned that some types of tomatoes need to be pruned as they grow to get the best results and cut down on disease… Here is a good how to video.

Albuquerque gardens

Japanese Garden at the Botanic Gardens

We went to the Botanic Gardens today and got to check out the new Sasebo Japanese Gardens. It’s really pretty, even in the fall. I can’t wait to see what it looks like next Spring and later when the plants are all established and bigger. There’s a really cool BIG waterfall that you can walk under, but you’d probably get wet. I posted some pictures here.

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Filipino Gardener versus Russian Sage

I tried to dig up a Russian Sage shrub in our front yard today because it’s starting to grow too wide. I moved the rocks around the base and started shoveling. I tried to pry the shrub up by the roots, but the shovel would have broken. Very deep roots it has! So, needless to say, it’s still in our front yard. I pruned it really heavily, so hopefully it’ll be a little more compact. I was going to dig it up and divide it and plant the other parts of it in the back yard, but I think in order to dig t up, we’d have to kill it altogether and butcher the roots, so maybe we’ll let it stay another year. So if you were wondering who won in the battle between the “Filipino Gardener versus Russian Sage,” it wasn’t me. 🙂

I also pruned my roses in the front yard today and pruned my photinias by the front door. I’m wanting to trim my tall photinia bushes to be more like small trees. Maybe I can get started in that tomorrow. I also need to move some bulbs and tubers I dug up in the backyard. I’m rearranging my plants yet again… some day I’ll let the plants settle down for good.

food gardens

Tangy Weeds

We tried eating those purslane weeds that we have growing in our backyard. I didn’t think they were too bad. Nathan said they tasted “leafy”. I thought they tasted like one of the greens in that spring greens mix they sell pre-bagged, but a bit tangy. I liked them okay. Dunno if they’ll bcome a regular staple in our diets though. I put them on my salad and they mixed in well with the tangy Italian dressing.

Speaking of salads, When I went to Australia a while back, I had salads there that were topped with some kind of sprout. It wasn’t alfalfa sprouts that you can find here. It was more flavorful. I really liked them, but haven’t been able to find out what they were. Maybe I’ll Google “Australian sprouts” and see what comes up. 🙂 I was hoping that the weed we have growing might be it, but I don’t think it is. And now, speaking of sprouts, here is the way to Sprout Wonderland. Who knew that some people loved sprouts THAT much?

food gardens

The friendly weeds take over

Nathan likes to pull weeds, but he limits his weed pulling to the “evil” kinds that grow stickers, such as goatheads. So our backyard is goathead free. But now, one of the “friendly” weeds has taken over after the abundant rains we’ve been having. I’ve finally identified it as the Common Purslane. It seems, we have lawn of the stuff now. Wikipedia says it’s edible. One of our friends from church saw it and he ate some. We may have to try a bite.

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Swimming and Botanic Gardens/Aquarium

We took Sean swimming at a local city pool today. He was shivering and didn’t seem to enjoy it all that much. Nathan and I took turns alternating between playing with Sean and swimming laps in the pool. I tell ya, swimming is a difficult sport! You really need to be in shape to swim very many laps. I’m not a good swimmer at all, so I mostly did a lame backstroke for several laps. I was pretty tired afterwards!

Afterwards, we went to the Botanic Gardens and Aquarium again, this time with Nathan. The Butterfly pavillion has opened and I was fortunate enough to get a few really good pictures of the “flying flowers” while they were still. Sean seems to be afraid of the butterflies. Go figure. He tried to kill red ants with his fingers, but a butterfly gets near him and he cries for his daddy to hold him! HAHA! The walk through the aquarium was very peaceful.. It was less than an hour until closing, so there was hardly anyone in there. That was pretty cool.

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Albuquerque Aquarium and Botanical Gardens

I took Nathan to his non-dentist appointment yesterday (he thought he had an appointment, but forgot he rescheduled it for another day). Then Sean and I went to the Aquarium and Botanical (botanic?) Gardens as soon as they opened. We had great fun. It was awesome to get to roam around the gardens before many other people were there. It was quiet, the butterflies were flouncing (flying in a bouncing sort of fashion) around, and we got to visit with some horses at the heritage farm in another part of the gardens. One of the horses let me pet it for a long time. Sean wanted to pet him, but kept chickening out just before he actually touched him. Anyway, it was a beautiful morning and we enjoyed smelling flowers and walking around. Then we went to the aquarium part and watched the stingrays and the sharks and sea turtle swimming by. That was fun too, except there were rowdy kids in the aquarium. I think next time, we’ll try going into the aquarium first to see it while it’s nice and quiet. We bought a yearly membership to the zoo, aquarium, and gardens this year, so we get to go as much as we want to… I’d like to go at least every couple weeks if we have time.